LMDE Xfce - UP5 issues

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LMDE Xfce - UP5 issues

Postby birchy on Sun Oct 28, 2012 1:10 pm

I've been using Mint for a couple of years and for the last year or so, LMDE with Mate. MintUpdate told me that UP5 was available, but I've put off installing it until recently. After running MintUpdate, everything appeared to install correctly with no errors. During the install, I opted to keep the existing settings files rather than install the new ones. Then I rebooted and discovered that my customised desktop and fonts were borked. After a lot of searching and running various commands, I managed to fix the rendering issues and get back to a reasonable setup, however the Firefox fonts still look awful on SOME web pages (mostly forums such as this). I've also noticed a major lag of about 5 to 10 seconds when minimising/maximising apps such as Pluma and Nicotine+. Others are fine. CPU and RAM usage are minimal and not causing the lag. For now, I have useable system but am not happy with it.

So I decided to bite the bullet and buy an SSD drive, which I had been toying with for several months. I did a fresh install of LMDE 201204 with Xfce and rebooted. I made no changes at all and ran MintUpdate to obtain UP5. Everything went well until I rebooted. Again, the desktop and fonts were borked and the default theme (which I was happy with) had gone.

TBH, I was expecting the Update Pack to simply upgrade the various packages and kernel and then run smoothly. What I DIDN'T expect was to have to mess around fixing problems. My whole reason for installing LMDE was to AVOID having lots of updates breaking my system. I like the idea of it "working out of the box" but so far have had nothing but bad experiences with all updates. All I want is a solid, stable desktop PC that will allow me to get on with my programming work. I'm not interested in cutting edge software, other than keeping up to date with the stable versions of Python (i.e. 2.7 at the time of writing).

Am I doing something wrong with MintUpdate?? Or does it have known issues? I currently have an empty SSD and want to install a fresh OS on it that will hopefully serve me for a few years without breaking. LMDE Xfce is looking attractive. Perhaps I should just install it and stick with UP4? Or would I be better off installing Debian and setting the sources.list to track Wheezy? Or maybe I can make LMDE track Wheezy once it goes stable?

Sorry for all the questions, my brain has gone fuzzy with a weekend of installing, updating, searching, fixing and re-installing!
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Re: LMDE Xfce - UP5 issues

Postby ketoth on Sun Oct 28, 2012 1:39 pm

Always mate sure to install the appropriate meta-package :) For example:
Code: Select all
apt install mint-meta-debian-xfce


I also experienced font problems after upgrade. Just a matter of appearance configuration, some stuff wasn't taken in account before, and now is.
Control panel > Appearance > Fonts.
Play around with the best suitable rendering (depends on screen type), and don't forget to take a look in "details".

FYI I'm using a LED display (and MATE):
Code: Select all
App font: Ubuntu
Docs font: Sans
Desktop: Sans
Title: Ubuntu Bold
fixed width: Monospace

Rendering: Subpixel
[details]
96 ppt
subpîxel smooth
light optim
subpixel RVB


If some websites show the wrong font, take a look in Firefox > Preferences > Content > Fonts and colors > Advanced. Mine is: Serif 16; Sans-serif; Sans-serif; Monospace 12.
Still considering installing fresh with UP6 ISO.
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Re: LMDE Xfce - UP5 issues

Postby birchy on Sun Oct 28, 2012 2:52 pm

ketoth wrote:Always mate sure to install the appropriate meta-package :) For example:
Code: Select all
apt install mint-meta-debian-xfce

Yes, I ran that command after installing, as advised in Update Pack Info. It didn't fix the problems I had. If anything, it made them worse as it changed the themes and colours again.

Thanks for posting the default fonts. Mine were the same but still looked crap. Maybe I have an issue with the nvidia graphics, as I've read they can be troublesome regarding drivers, etc.

I think my love affair with LMDE has run its course. I'm currently looking at Mepis and SolusOS. The latter could well be what I'm looking for.
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Re: LMDE Xfce - UP5 issues

Postby cwsnyder on Sun Oct 28, 2012 7:17 pm

From what you are stating your wishes in a Linux distribution, you might want to install LMDE to track stable rather than testing, or to use LM 13 and don't upgrade to LM 14 or later until LM 13 is no longer supported (LM 13 is a LTS (Long Term Support) version).
LMDE Mate 64-bit, LM17 Mate 64-bit
Debian Xfce 64-bit, Xubuntu 14.10 64-bit, Xubuntu 14.04 64-bit, Antergos Xfce 64-bit, PCLinuxOS LXDE 64-bit
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Re: LMDE Xfce - UP5 issues

Postby zerozero on Sun Oct 28, 2012 8:02 pm

birchy,
sorry to hear that you are having troubles with UP5.
most of the issues are well known, see this topic here >> viewtopic.php?f=198&t=112789
the only one that i can't put my finger on is:
birchy wrote: I've also noticed a major lag of about 5 to 10 seconds when minimising/maximising apps such as Pluma and Nicotine+. Others are fine. CPU and RAM usage are minimal and not causing the lag.
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Re: LMDE Xfce - UP5 issues

Postby birchy on Mon Oct 29, 2012 7:37 pm

cwsnyder wrote:From what you are stating your wishes in a Linux distribution, you might want to install LMDE to track stable rather than testing
That would be a suitable solution if there were no system-breaking updates. I did do some research into this but saw so many different versions of sources.list that I didn't know what to use. Despite using Linux for a number of years, I'm not an expert, so do not know (or want to learn) exactly how the system works. I want the PC to be working for ME, not the other way round. :)

Soooo....how do I make a fresh install of LMDE Xfce track Stable AND be able to keep up to date with just one or two apps from Testing (i.e. Firefox and Python and nothing else I can think of right now)?


zerozero wrote:the only one that i can't put my finger on is:
birchy wrote: I've also noticed a major lag of about 5 to 10 seconds when minimising/maximising apps such as Pluma and Nicotine+. Others are fine. CPU and RAM usage are minimal and not causing the lag.
Yes, it's a weird one for sure. I've had no problems at all tonight. I wonder if it is related to some other issue I have on rare occasions where Firefox and CheckGmail loses internet connection? What happens is that CheckGmail and Firefox won't load any pages, saying they're all unreachable or offline or whatever BUT my router is still connected and LAN is fine. If I run a test ping or traceroute or one of my Python apps that uses http, they all work fine. If I close Firefox then logout and login to the system, the problem goes away. Time for a clean install me thinks...
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Re: LMDE Xfce - UP5 issues

Postby zerozero on Mon Oct 29, 2012 8:48 pm

birchy wrote:how do I make a fresh install of LMDE Xfce track Stable
this isn't the right timing for that, the existing stable is in the end of its cycle and try to make this lmde stable would be more trouble than it would worth.
birchy wrote:Or maybe I can make LMDE track Wheezy once it goes stable?
this! once debian7 goes gold it will be a matter of changing a few words in the sources.list.
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Re: LMDE Xfce - UP5 issues

Postby cpatrick08 on Tue Oct 30, 2012 12:21 pm

zerozero wrote:
birchy wrote:how do I make a fresh install of LMDE Xfce track Stable
this isn't the right timing for that, the existing stable is in the end of its cycle and try to make this lmde stable would be more trouble than it would worth.
birchy wrote:Or maybe I can make LMDE track Wheezy once it goes stable?
this! once debian7 goes gold it will be a matter of changing a few words in the sources.list.

or he could change testing to wheezy and it would go to stable once debian7 goes gold
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Re: LMDE Xfce - UP5 issues

Postby birchy on Tue Oct 30, 2012 7:44 pm

It was my understanding that I could change my sources to wheezy instead of testing and that would then be tracking stable when Debian 7 goes mainstream?

My current sources.list is the default:
Code: Select all
deb http://packages.linuxmint.com/ debian main upstream import
deb http://debian.linuxmint.com/latest testing main contrib non-free
deb http://debian.linuxmint.com/latest/security testing/updates main contrib non-free
deb http://debian.linuxmint.com/latest/multimedia testing main non-free

The following list seems logical, but do these repos actually exist, or would I need to substitute the linuxmint urls for the Debian ones?
Code: Select all
deb http://packages.linuxmint.com/ debian main upstream import
deb http://debian.linuxmint.com/latest wheezy main contrib non-free
deb http://debian.linuxmint.com/latest/security wheezy/updates main contrib non-free
deb http://debian.linuxmint.com/latest/multimedia wheezy main non-free


I don't have any major gripes with following Testing, it's the Update Packs that annoy me when they bork the system. Would I get more joy from crontab'ing these commands once a week? Or is that a bad idea?
Code: Select all
sudo apt-get update
sudo apt-get upgrade
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Re: LMDE Xfce - UP5 issues

Postby cpatrick08 on Tue Oct 30, 2012 9:41 pm

birchy wrote:It was my understanding that I could change my sources to wheezy instead of testing and that would then be tracking stable when Debian 7 goes mainstream?

My current sources.list is the default:
Code: Select all
deb http://packages.linuxmint.com/ debian main upstream import
deb http://debian.linuxmint.com/latest testing main contrib non-free
deb http://debian.linuxmint.com/latest/security testing/updates main contrib non-free
deb http://debian.linuxmint.com/latest/multimedia testing main non-free

The following list seems logical, but do these repos actually exist, or would I need to substitute the linuxmint urls for the Debian ones?
Code: Select all
deb http://packages.linuxmint.com/ debian main upstream import
deb http://debian.linuxmint.com/latest wheezy main contrib non-free
deb http://debian.linuxmint.com/latest/security wheezy/updates main contrib non-free
deb http://debian.linuxmint.com/latest/multimedia wheezy main non-free


I don't have any major gripes with following Testing, it's the Update Packs that annoy me when they bork the system. Would I get more joy from crontab'ing these commands once a week? Or is that a bad idea?
Code: Select all
sudo apt-get update
sudo apt-get upgrade

you could do that but would only get updates when mint rleases a update pack if you want updates when debain releases them then go to http://debgen.simplylinux.ch/ it will help you create a sources.list file. The updates repo wont work until wheezy is gold use the deb-multimedia.org not the Debian Multimedia one and change testing & squeeze to wheezy.
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Re: LMDE Xfce - UP5 issues

Postby zerozero on Wed Oct 31, 2012 6:45 am

birchy wrote:It was my understanding that I could change my sources to wheezy instead of testing and that would then be tracking stable when Debian 7 goes mainstream?
yes you can with some ease but now is not the right timing.
birchy wrote:The following list seems logical, but do these repos actually exist, or would I need to substitute the linuxmint urls for the Debian ones?

if you really want to make any changes now replace your existing repos with:
Code: Select all
deb http://packages.linuxmint.com/ debian main upstream import
deb http://ftp.debian.org/debian/ wheezy main contrib non-free
deb http://security.debian.org/ wheezy/updates main contrib non-free
deb http://www.deb-multimedia.org/ wheezy main non-free
but be aware that this means:
- you are getting immediately a huge update (not UP-like huge but...)
- until more or less fev next year you are effectively tracking testing (the actual wheezy) and then you will go stable together with debian7.
- as you are using xfce it's safer to keep packages.linuxmint in your repos.
- after fev you might want to have a look at debian backports http://backports-master.debian.org/ (not before, not now, the next stable wheezy backports are still not there and using backports in testing is not advisable) >>you surely might want to look at backports because stable will age very quickly and it's the best way to keep some applications up-to-date.

birchy wrote:Would I get more joy from crontab'ing these commands once a week? Or is that a bad idea?

at the moment (following either the default lmde or if/when you decide to follow testing) yes, it's a bad idea: these releases should be maintained with dist-upgrade; if you decide later to go with stable you can use those commands, no problem.
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Re: LMDE Xfce - UP5 issues

Postby birchy on Wed Oct 31, 2012 7:36 pm

Thanks for the info guys, it's very much appreciated. I think I'll just install LMDE Xfce on the new SSD drive and leave it alone until early next year. By then, Debian 7 will be gold, there will be a newer version of LMDE available and I guess SolusOS 2.0 should be around as well. :wink:
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